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partnerships:articles:brian [2017/06/12 10:20] (current)
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 +An employment policy for the United Kingdom
 +===========================================
 +
 +### by Brian Burrows, Futures Information Associates
 +
 +This is a revised version of a paper written in 1993 which was presented
 +to The UK Futures Group on 21st September 1996. It has been further
 +revised as a result of the discussion at this meeting
 +
 +Introduction
 +------------
 +
 +\
 + The reported number of people out of work in the United Kingdom is
 +about 2,300 million. At its peak it was about 3 million and most people
 +expected it to rise. However there have been many changes in the way
 +government statistics have been calculated so it is not easy to know if
 +these figures are correct. The problem is that the figures are not
 +produced by an independent body. The proposal by the Labour Party that
 +future statistics be produced by an independent body is vital for
 +efficient government. The Central Statistical Office could be set up as
 +an independent body and monitored by The Statistical Society. The danger
 +is that any government that has been in power for a long while and is
 +failing will be tempted to be selective when presenting any statistics.\
 +\
 + Also these figures only measure people claiming benefit not people
 +seeking work. It has been estimated that 50% of men over 50 are not
 +working but many have pensions and savings so are excluded from benefit.
 +Many of the new jobs are low paid and part time. These are counted as
 +full time employment which gives a false impression of people seeking
 +full time employment.
 +
 +### Changing Work Patterns
 +
 +One of the reasons for the lack of the feel good factor is that work
 +patterns are changing so there is little job security. There has been a
 +growth in self employment and small businesses. The most encouraging
 +sector is the rise of the networking company. This consists of self
 +employed people who are online and can act as large or medium sized
 +companies. A study of the membership of the Strategic Planning Society
 +reflects this trend. In my view this is the area from which new ideas
 +and growth will emerge. This has been described as networking or
 +groupware companies but the most recent development is the virtual
 +company which operates in hyberspace. It is now possible for self
 +employed people in any location in the world to set up PLC companies
 +which will challenge the large companies in the service sector.\
 +\
 + ​However there is another area which is causing problems. Due to
 +investment in new technology, large firms are making men redundant while
 +many woman are forced into part time low paid jobs. There has been a 28%
 +increase in employment of woman while jobs for men have dropped by 20%.
 +This growth is one example of employment growth but there is a danger of
 +Britain becoming the sweat shop of Europe. The decline in employment for
 +men was reflected in an article in the Financial Times indicating large
 +job losses in engineering in 1994. (1) Since then due to investment in
 +technology this trend is now happening in the office sector with large
 +job losses in the service sector, mainly in banks and insurance
 +companies.\
 +\
 + Also an article in The Economist has an explanation for the fall in
 +unemployment figures. (2) The reason offered by Goldman Sachs is the
 +decline in young people coming onto the job market. In the 1980s the
 +working age population grew by an average of 100,000 each quarter. The
 +rise in 1994 was only 19,000.
 +
 +### The Cost of Keeping People Idle
 +
 +One of the ideas I have used in my work is the concept of Occam'​s razor.
 +When decisions are difficult go for the simplest solution. This can be
 +applied to historical and future studies. For example, the core
 +objective of the Conservative Party was to create wealth with less
 +concern for the poor or for social justice. The Labour Party was more
 +concerned with the poor and social justice but failed to create the
 +wealth to achieve their objectives.\
 +\
 + The present government has failed all its objectives and has only
 +created wealth for a very small section of the community, who have
 +failed to invest in the economy.\
 +\
 + The government has admitted that the cost of keeping one person
 +unemployed is about £9,000 a year. Nationwide this could cost about £47b
 +per year, which may be an underestimate because of the following
 +factors. It is assumed that lost revenue from income tax is included in
 +this figure but it does not include the cost of combating crime and
 +vandalism, rising insurance costs and extra costs to the National Health
 +Service. (3)\
 +\
 + We are now faced with about one million young people and one million
 +older people who have been out of work for over one year. One of the
 +basic rules of good government is that the young are never kept idle.
 +They have to be motivated into undertaking tasks that are of interest to
 +them and useful to society. Costly rioting has already occurred in the
 +inner cities and could happen again if more positive action is not
 +taken. High unemployment could destroy the fabric of British society,
 +which is already showing signs of fragmentation and disintegration.
 +
 +### An Employment Plan for the United Kingdom
 +
 +A paradox of the present situation is that there is much work which
 +needs to be done but the British government considers that it cannot
 +afford the initial funding required to create the necessary jobs. Public
 +expenditure is already out of control through paying people to be idle.
 +In reality, in the long term, the government cannot afford not to spend
 +money on creating these vital jobs. The plan described below indicates
 +the tremendous scope for job creation in\
 + ​various growth areas of the economy, and even considerable scope in
 +some of the present areas of decline.\
 +
 +Areas of decline in employment
 +------------------------------
 +
 +The worst area of decline in employment has been in manufacturing but
 +there is also considerable decline in office work, together with some in
 +services.
 +
 +### Manufacturing
 +
 +Due to advanced manufacturing methods employment levels will continue to
 +decline. Government research funding in automation is needed to halt the
 +decline in the United Kingdom'​s share of world markets. In recent years
 +this decline has been so extensive that any growth in the economy has
 +resulted in increased imports and the danger of a further crisis in the
 +balance of payments. Although employment in manufacturing will decline,
 +the larger the manufacturing base the larger the service sector will be.
 +Thus jobs will be created in marketing, packaging, distribution and
 +general services.\
 +\
 + The United Kingdom'​s manufacturing base used to be about 40% but has
 +declined to about 20%. Its share of world trade is now about 8.4% (4).\
 +\
 + The only hope is a government led initiative in integrated
 +manufacturing systems. For example, in the 1950s and 1960s the UK was
 +self-sufficient in the electronics sector and also exported to other
 +countries. After a rapid decline, growth began again in 1983, mainly due
 +to overseas manufacturing investment. The deficit in 1992 was about £1.4
 +billion but this is improving, mainly due to investment by firms from
 +the USA, Japan and mainland Europe. (5) The major challenge is now
 +coming from growth in the Pacific Rim, where there is major investment
 +in new technology and new products.
 +
 +### Office Work
 +
 +Just as industrial employment started to fall in British industry in the
 +1970s and 1980s, so it is now beginning to decline in the British office
 +sector. This trend will continue but employment levels will be higher
 +than those for manufacturing because the tasks are harder to automate.
 +Recent examples are facilities management, outsourcing and downsizing. A
 +more recent example is hot desking, where two people share one desk at
 +work and spend 50% of their time working from home.
 +
 +### General Services
 +
 +There is both growth and decline in this sector, so that its overall
 +employment levels could be stable with no growth prospects.\
 +
 +Areas for growth in employment
 +------------------------------
 +
 +### Health Care
 +
 +There are almost limitless opportunities for increasing employment
 +levels in the public health sector for the following reasons. People are
 +living longer and an aging population needs more health care. New
 +medical methods and new medical technology are being deployed so that
 +more effective treatment is possible. The private medical sector
 +employment will grow, but much less than in the public sector, because
 +the private sector is not interested in social problems but aims to
 +provide immediate treatment to people who can afford it and/or who work
 +in key areas.
 +
 +### Social Services
 +
 +\
 + ​Again,​ there is tremendous scope for increased employment because of
 +the major increase in the older age groups of the population. During the
 +period of Conservative government from 1979 the gap between rich and
 +poor has become much wider, causing major demands for social services.
 +Elderly people are now being forced into private care so they have to
 +spend their life savings and then sell their homes to finance their
 +care. This privatising of elderly people'​s care is a major crime. One
 +possible approach would be to double unemployment pay to people who
 +would assist elderly people so they could stay in their own homes.
 +
 +### Education and Training
 +
 +\
 + Again this is a labour intensive sector and lack of investment is one
 +of the reasons for the decline in the economy of the UK. A massive
 +investment plan is needed with a seamless link between education and
 +training. Computer programmed learning for both education and training
 +is necessary for all. The objective should be a computer linked to
 +Internet for each pupil so people are prepared for the growth in a self
 +employed economy.
 +
 +### Security
 +
 +The number of police in the community needs to be doubled. At the same
 +time there is a need for trained civilian staff at police stations to
 +take over clerical duties. For example, reports from police on patrol
 +could be downloaded by mobile telephones and notebook computers. The
 +returning police officer would only need to check and sign the report-
 +currently some officers have to type out their reports on manual
 +typewriters. Unless such measures are taken crime will become more
 +widespread and there will be more no-go areas with people trapped in
 +their homes. The private security sector is also growing but this needs
 +to be closely monitored.
 +
 +### Treatment of Criminals
 +
 +Unless violent they should be made to do community work. Criminals who
 +swindle elderly people'​s savings could be put to work on social
 +services..\
 +\
 + Those who have to be sent to prison should be put to work making
 +equipment for the disabled. Privileges should depend on the quality of
 +work. Thus prisons would be centres of training and education. This can
 +only be done if there is a large increase in staff to carry out the
 +programme. At present many prisons are controlled by the experienced
 +prisoners so that first offenders come out of prison as more effective
 +criminals.
 +
 +### Agriculture and Food
 +
 +Intensive agribusiness and factory farming are not sustainable in the
 +long term. Therefore the UK will need to move back to more labour
 +intensive mixed and organic farming, and to methods using biodiversity,​
 +gene banks for seeds and carefully controlled genetic engineering.\
 + ​Unless there are changes from intensive agriculture to sustainable
 +methods then world food shortages could occur. There are no food
 +mountains now in Europe.
 +
 +### Environmental Industries
 +
 +There is tremendous scope for a whole range of work for improving the
 +environment,​ reducing pollution and using energy more efficiently. For
 +example millions of homes in the UK are at present heated very
 +wastefully because of inadequate insulation. Many thousands of people
 +could be employed in a publicly subsidised programme to install proper
 +insulation in these homes. Many of these homes are old houses occupied
 +by the elderly and the poor who therefore spend more on energy and
 +produce more pollution than owners of well insulated homes.\
 +\
 + Other areas of development are the use of sensors for pollution control
 +and more energy efficient equipment. Most firms are now developing an
 +environmental auditing policy. There is a link here with improved ethics
 +in business and quality management . (6-11) Because of unethical
 +standards in the private sector there could be a growth of hostility
 +towards all in business. It is clear that the free market economy
 +creates wealth but causes social problems which it does not fund and the
 +command economy does not provide the products people need. The solution
 +is mixed economy but getting the balance correct is not easy.
 +
 +### Small Businesses
 +
 +The Conservative government under Margaret Thatcher claimed to support
 +the growth of small businesses but soon lost interest when she became
 +involved in protecting the establishment,​ which prevents change. Many
 +large IT companies were started by entrepreneurs from garages in their
 +own homes which later grew into large businesses.
 +
 +### The Networking and Virtual Companies and the New Entrepreneurial Revolution
 +
 +As we have seen with online systems, Internet and CD/ROM, it is now
 +possible to work from home and have as much access to world-wide
 +information systems as large organisations have. Many self employed
 +people are now working in groups for specific projects. These small
 +groups are more productive than large organisations and are free to
 +develop new ideas. This is the best way the UK and mainland Europe can
 +meet the challenge from the Pacific Rim, which is where the new ideas
 +and products will come from. Sun Microsytems have developed Java which
 +is software which can integrate GIS with Internet so that a full global
 +information system is now being developed. As it is now possible to
 +develop a career without moving it is likely that the extended family
 +could be re-established which will create a more stable society and help
 +to solve the problem of care for the elderly.\
 +
 +Barriers to employment growth
 +-----------------------------
 +
 +### Government Organisations and Expenditure
 +
 +The essential government policies for stimulating the economy and
 +helping to create new jobs will need major funding in the short term,
 +although they will lead to savings in expenditure later on. It is thus
 +important to look for ways to save expenditure that do not have damaging
 +effects. This can be done by improving efficiency in areas where current
 +government spending is wasteful.\
 +\
 + Most of this ineffective expenditure is devoted to maintaining a very
 +inefficient and unproductive civil service, which is the least
 +productive sector in the UK economy. For example the most powerful
 +government department is the Treasury, which has never made a correct
 +economic forecast. An article in the New Scientist explains why their
 +forecasts are always wrong. (12) The software programs are so complex
 +that uncertainty cannot be built into the system so that trends are only
 +extrapolated,​ which is totally inappropriate in today'​s situation.\
 +\
 + ​Therefore the Treasury staff involved should be made redundant and
 +forecasting contracted out to the private sector. This could consist of
 +three organisations and if their results proved to be inaccurate their
 +contracts would not be renewed. The firms which provide the most
 +accurate forecasts are often reviewed in the Financial Times. (13)\
 +\
 + ​Attempts have been made by the present government to outsource some
 +civil service activities to the private sector but with little success.
 +Several people involved in this work with the civil service have
 +reported that they are not able to find any one person with overall
 +responsibility. The inefficiency of the civil service is well documented
 +by Leslie Chapman (14) and Clive Ponting (15). Leslie Chapman worked for
 +the Ministry of Works time while ago and became very unpopular by
 +attempting to establish procedures which would save money. Clive Ponting
 +was a senior civil servant for 15 years and resigned to disclose
 +information which he considered should be in the public domain.\
 +\
 + He concludes his book with the following views:\
 +\
 + "​There has been no serious attempt to reform British government this
 +century. If Britain is to cope with its current and future problems,
 +Whitehall must not only be reformed, but transformed"​. (15) p243\
 +\
 + Clive Ponting concludes that any attempts for reform have been blocked
 +by senior civil servants. The TV programmes of Yes Minister and Yes
 +Prime Minister illustrates the considerable negative power to prevent
 +change by senior civil servants. The author of this series, Anthony Jay,
 +claims that the events are based on real life situations. One solution
 +would be to increase the powers of the National Audit Office and the
 +Government Select Committees.
 +
 +### Privatisation
 +
 +There has been some success here but many failures as a public monopoly
 +is better than a private one. Thus BT are more efficient due to
 +competition from Mercury, the cable companies and other recent entrants
 +to the market.\
 +\
 + What is needed is a dialogue between the private and public sectors.
 +The gas pipe line and the National Grid should be in public hands with
 +freedom to buy from any source. However, water and the railways must be
 +public national services. The solution in the short term for a future
 +government would be tight control over water and public transport.
 +
 +### Restructuring the Economic and Social System
 +
 +What can be concluded from this is that both the total collective
 +society of the former Soviet Union and free range capitalism have
 +failed. Therefore the next paradigm will be the reforming and
 +restructuring of the economic and social systems. At present we are
 +failing to provide work for the young in the UK, where there are about
 +one million unemployed youngsters. Some young people are mature enough
 +to organise and make a success of their lives but many have had a poor
 +education and need support and training. If this is not done the danger
 +is that they will become involved in crime, violence and drugs. This is
 +already happening now and the cost for all of us is very great. If the
 +UK is to survive it must be concerned with the future of the young. A
 +culture could develop among the young in which stealing is seen as a
 +source of income and vandalism as a source of entertainment.\
 +
 +Solutions
 +---------
 +
 +The first action is to implement an agreed employment policy between the
 +private and public sector. This can only be implemented if the
 +government is reformed by the following measures.\
 +\
 + ​Action is required to reduce the cost and power of central government.
 +The first reform should be to take away the power of the Treasury. An
 +article in The Guardian makes the point that, "There is no reason why
 +the conduct of monetary policy could not be transferred to the Bank of
 +England under a mandate from the government of the day. Nor is there any
 +reason why the Bank should not manage the foreign exchange reserves and
 +the funding of the deficit."​ (16) This would reduce the Treasury'​s
 +control of public spending and give other government departments more
 +freedom. In my view the power of the Treasury needs to be reduced to
 +that of a book keeping role for government expenditure and all powers of
 +policy making taken away from it.\
 +\
 + At the same time we need a federal structure in the UK with both local
 +and regional government, leading to more open government. This will give
 +people more control over their lives which will lead to a more
 +entrepreneurial culture and the ability to cope with the major changes
 +facing us. However this cannot be achieved until there is a Bill of
 +Rights based on a Freedom of Information Act. The cultural values of the
 +UK will have to change if this is to succeed.
 +
 +### United Kingdom Culture
 +
 +In Saxon times there was a federal culture in England but after the
 +Norman invasion a feudal culture was imposed. This has resulted in both
 +an elitist society and a confrontational culture. Examples of this can
 +be seen in the House of Commons and the Law Courts. Therefore many of
 +our institutions need to be reformed. A useful model for this is the
 +select committees of the House of Commons where any attempt to be
 +selective with the truth is exposed. One way in which our institutions
 +can be reformed is to encourage more woman to play major roles.
 +
 +### Areas for Future Study
 +
 +If market forces are ignored, as they were in the former Soviet Union,
 +the basic needs of the people are not met. However it is now clear that
 +market forces alone do not solve social problems and can often create
 +them.\
 +\
 + ​Therefore we need to study the history of capitalism from the time of
 +Adam Smith. The Wealth of Nations has been studied but not his earlier
 +work, The Theory of Moral Sentiments. Adam Smith was a professor of
 +moral philosophy, not an economist.\
 +\
 + His first book, The Theory of Moral Sentiments, provided the moral
 +basis of capitalism and The Wealth of Nations explained how the market
 +operated. The standard editions of both books are in print but a book is
 +needed which selects the key points made by Smith, to be published under
 +the heading The Essential Adam Smith. This could form the basis of
 +research on restructuring capitalism. This can be linked to the growing
 +amount of work on improving business ethics. A useful book on this
 +subject, The Just Enterprise by George Goyder, is essential reading.
 +(17) In this book a wider view of Adam Smith is presented as well as a
 +basis for research on more ethical business. This book was first
 +published in 1987 and was ignored due to a get-rich culture based on the
 +Stock Market recycling money and not investing in the needs of the
 +country. It is now back in print and it is essential that its message is
 +no longer ignored .
 +
 +### A Wider Understanding of the Economic System
 +
 +Both Charles Handy and James Robertson have written widely on the
 +changes taking place in the economy, how the impact of information
 +technology is changing the structure of organisations,​ where they can do
 +more with less and the move towards a self employed economy.\
 +\
 + ​Charles Handy argues that new forms of work in the future will be
 +shorter contract work, more part time work and a growth from working
 +from home. Also the distinction between voluntary and cooperative work
 +and what has been described as a proper job will become blurred. (18)\
 +\
 + James Robertson comes to similar conclusions. (19). He sees three trend
 +which are:\
 + ​Business as usual\
 + A leisure based society\
 + ​Ownwork\
 +\
 + It is clear that business as usual is not working and that we are
 +moving towards a society with an increase in leisure activity. However
 +the unemployed have leisure forced on them so the concept of ownwork in
 +which people can earn a living and at the same time have some control
 +over their lives is a way forward. James Robertson expands these views
 +in an article in Futures (20). In this paper it is argued that the
 +information and communication technologies (ICTs) can be used to
 +accelerate the transition to environmentally sustainable development
 +This can only be done by setting the following objectives:​\
 +\
 + ​Restructuring taxation to ensure sustainable development\
 + ​Increasing benefits which will increase the supply of jobs\
 + ​Encourage a more rapid take up of ICTs\
 + ​Establish alternatives to formal employment such as greater economic
 +self reliance and improved eduction and training\
 + ​Changing R&D policies to support sustainable development\
 +\
 + It is concluded that this can only be achieved by harnessing market
 +forces which are then directed to the above goals.\
 +\
 + The clear message is the unemployment problem will not be solved unless
 +changes are made to the present economic system.\
 +\
 + The key work here has been done by Hazel Henderson. In her view the
 +present economic system does not measure true GNP. For example, child
 +care, housework and voluntary health care are not measured but disasters
 +such as hurricanes and oil spills show up as growth in GNP. She claims
 +that unless the economic system measures the whole economy the following
 +will continue. (21)\
 +\
 + ​Growth = Employment\
 + ​Employment = Inflation\
 + ​Inflation = Unemployment\
 + ​Unemployment = Zero Growth and Reduced Inflation\
 + ​Reduced Inflation = Growth etc\
 +\
 + Thus the choice in capitalist society today is high employment and high
 +inflation or low inflation and and high unemployment.\
 +\
 + One of the classic works on the economy still has value. This is The
 +General Theory by Maynard Keynes (22). He challenged the traditional
 +views of the day and argued that there was no automatic mechanism to
 +equate the total demand for and the supply of productive labour. Thus he
 +saw a relationship between market forces and government expenditure and
 +involvement with the economy. The New Deal policy promoted by Roosevelt
 +in the USA and the full employment policies of British Governments in
 +the past have been based on these principles with some success.\
 +\
 + ​Therefore the government'​s claim to have conquered inflation with its
 +present policies is likely to be proved incorrect. This is a problem
 +which capitalism has not yet solved. One area to explore which could
 +help to solve this dilemma is the relationship between organisations and
 +self regulating systems.
 +
 +### Cybernetics and Government
 +
 +The only way to make government more effective and to reduce government
 +expenditure on itself is to introduce self regulating systems which will
 +prevent government officials complicating decisions taken by government.
 +As we have seen the Government failure to control its expenditure is due
 +to the number of people out of work. Others factors are the rise in self
 +employment as the self employed pay less tax and the rise of low paid
 +jobs where little tax is paid. The wages are so low for many of these
 +jobs that they attract income support which shows up as government
 +expenditure. Also they have cut taxes for the well paid.
 +
 +### The Historian as a Futurist
 +
 +This phrase was coined by Asa Briggs and this is an area neglected by
 +many futurists.(23). There are a number of historical models for the
 +future in the United Kingdom. History is written by the people who win
 +so only works which study contemporary records should be used.
 +
 +### Anglo Saxon England
 +
 +Recent studies have shown that for its day this was an advanced society.
 +There was a open field policy and the only enclosures were for the
 +growing of crops. There was a hierarchy of decision making which was
 +similar to the concept of federalism today. After the Norman occupation
 +feudalism was imposed on England with major land enclosures. Traces of
 +this elite still exist today where 70% of land is owned by 1% of the
 +population. There are many learned books on this subject but the most
 +readable account is in the first few chapters of a book by Marian Shoard
 +(24).
 +
 +### Pre Industrial Britain
 +
 +A sustainable economy had developed based on local cottage industries
 +and organic farming. This was so successful that the population
 +increased. In order to meet increased food demand the result was more
 +enclosures and a move to large scale intensive farming. New inventions
 +also resulted in the Industrial Revolution where the peasants were
 +forced off the land into low paid factory work. The only people to
 +attempt to prevent this happening were the Luddites. They could not have
 +won because when new methods are developed they cannot be ignored.
 +However what they stood for has been ignored but a recent book has
 +studied their views (25). These are important as they provide us with a
 +model for a post industrial society.
 +
 +### The Structure of Society and Employment Levels
 +
 +In present day capitalist society market forces both create and destroy
 +jobs but in a period of rapid change the time lag between creating and
 +destroying of jobs is great. Thus the structure and values of a society
 +have an effect on employment levels.\
 +\
 + Saxon society was an agricultural economy based on the growth of crops
 +and the breeding and feeding of animals. Work was related to the seasons
 +and the concept of unemployment was unknown. Later, under the Norman
 +occupation, a slave economy was imposed on this peasant way of life.
 +This gradually developed into a village based economy based on organic
 +farming and cottage industries. These cottage industries were owned by
 +families so there was no concept of unemployment.\
 +\
 + This way of life was destroyed by the agricultural and industrial
 +revolutions. An elitist society was created which reimposed the values
 +of the Norman culture and also created poverty and unemployment.\
 +\
 + Since then there have been long periods of wide-scale unemployment
 +which has only been solved by major wars where the full resources of the
 +nation were used in order to defeat the enemy. There was mass
 +unemployment after the First World War but less so after the Second
 +World War. However the result of any large scale conflict is a surge in
 +inflation.\
 +\
 + We face a similar problem today to that which was created by the
 +industrial revolution. It is clear that the information revolution is
 +causing major job losses in large companies. With the use of new
 +technology they are doing more with less staff. At the same time they
 +are reducing their office space by the use of "hot desking",​ where two
 +people share a desk and work from home on alternative days.\
 +\
 + ​Therefore new employment will only be created by small businesses and
 +the self employed. The most encouraging area is the concept of the
 +virtual company. This often consists of a group of people who are self
 +employed, work from home and use modern communication methods. Often
 +they are registered as PLC companies and individuals can be in any
 +location or country. Thus they can trade on a global basis but assist in
 +promoting the local economy. Global trade is vital. An example of the
 +effect of trade barriers is the period between the two world wars. In
 +the United Kingdom there were 2.9 million unemployed which in percentage
 +terms is higher than later periods of unemployment. However there was
 +zero inflation and the only solution to this so far is a wider
 +measurement of GNP proposed by Hazel Headers (21)\
 +\
 + ​However there is an elitist and centralised political system in the
 +United Kingdom where the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. This
 +elite has the same values as the Norman culture, which is inhibiting
 +change which is needed to meet the challenges of the 21st century.\
 +\
 + The danger facing us in the United Kingdom and the world is the rise of
 +closed mind fundamentalist thinking. It is poverty which assists
 +extremists to take power and it is only high employment levels which
 +will challenge their ideology. Also if there are no jobs for young
 +people they revert to tribal values. They mark out their territory with
 +graffiti, see vandalism as their leisure activity and stealing as their
 +income.\
 +\
 + Thus we must give power back to the people at a regional and local
 +level. At present the mass culture is destroying local economies by
 +continued centralisation. A major attack on this centralisation of power
 +is well documented by John Papworth in Small is Powerful (26)\
 +\
 + As we move towards a self employed culture most people will choose to
 +live in villages and small communities. This will halt the destruction
 +of these communities by centralisation. It could also re-create the
 +extended family within a generation which would re-establish a more
 +stable society in the United Kingdom, provide work for young people and
 +assist in care for aging parents. All this work will be service based
 +with possible cottage industries. The manufacturing sector based on
 +automation will not fit into this local economy as location will depend
 +on good transport links. However, as we have seen, employment levels
 +will be greatly reduced in this sector and the problem is to develop non
 +polluting transport.\
 +
 +Conclusions
 +-----------
 +
 +It is now clear that neither the command nor the free market economy can
 +provide fair and viable government. Thus there must be a partnership
 +between the public and private sector. The problem is to get the balance
 +right. If we are to progress towards a more civilized society the party
 +which gets the balance correct will play a major role in a more just and
 +viable society. If it is driven by any form of ideology this approach
 +will fail. Too much government control results in a distorted market,
 +too much private control causes social problems. Getting the balance
 +right is the major challenge facing the developed countries.\
 +\
 + What is needed is the viable models of the past plus the techniques of
 +the strategic planners and the imagination of the futurists to combine
 +to develop a strategy for a viable future.\
 +\
 + Will Hutton'​s concept of the stakeholder society is also a means of
 +getting more people involved. Many members of the public are alienated
 +because they feel they are not involved in decision making. His book The
 +State We Are In (27) has sold many copies so this is an important
 +development. It is essential that if futurists are to play a major role
 +in society then they must present some of their work which reaches out
 +to the public. The best example so far is by Graham May with the
 +challenging title The Future is Ours (28). The problems we face today
 +are immediate but there are no short term solutions. Therefore futurists
 +must be more visible with these solutions. If this is done then we have
 +a marketing hook to become more involved with the general public and
 +their concerns.\
 +\
 + ​Maynard Keynes concludes his General Theory as follows:
 +
 +> " I am sure that the power of vested interests is vastly exaggerated
 +> compared with the gradual approachment of ideas... But sooner or
 +> later, it is ideas, not vested interests, which are dangerous for good
 +> or evil." (22) p383-4
 +
 +\
 + The 20th Century has been dominated by evil ideas which still lurk in
 +the shadows. It is the task of futurists to develop new ideas which are
 +dangerous to the existing establishment but of help to the general
 +public. Therefore the objective is to strengthen the local economy and
 +create what James Robetson has described as " own work"\
 +\
 + At present we have an economy where executives who fail, cause major
 +job losses, and are rewarded by large sums of money which is a meal
 +ticket for the rest of their lives\
 +\
 + ​Futurists have a major opportunity to change this way of life in the
 +21st century as we approach the Millenium as people expectation of
 +change are increased. An example of the attitude at the end of the last
 +century is given by Flora Thompson. She wrote a series of well written
 +books which are also important as social history from Lark Rise to
 +Candleford, Still Glides the Stream. In her last book Heatherely based
 +on her experience in a Hampshire village she describes how the village
 +life is changing. She also makes the following comments of the
 +expectations of people for the 20th Century. (29)
 +
 +> People were going to live longer and healthier lives, science would
 +> see to that, and extended leisure would provide an opportunity for
 +> mental and spiritual cultivation. That a new century would bring a new
 +> and better way of living was taken for granted
 +
 +\
 + The result was two world wars and Hitler and Stalin, the threat of
 +nuclear war, and today many areas of conflict, poverty and hunger as
 +well as the threat terrorism and environmental degradation. There is now
 +an emerging profession of futurists and it is our duty to create a
 +better future world.\
 +
 +References
 +----------
 +
 +\(1) Andrew Baxter\
 + ​Engineers set to cut 40,000 jobs\
 + ​Financial Times, 19 April 1994, p10\
 +\
 + (2) Unemployment. Silver linings\
 + ​Economist,​19 Feb 1994, p28-29\
 +\
 + (3) Lisa Wood\
 + ​Record numbers of jobless seek mental help\
 + ​Financial Times, 27 Jan 1993, p8\
 +\
 + (4) Tony Jackson\
 + Charm offensive with some value\
 + ​Financial Times, 20 March 1993, p8\
 +\
 + (5) Alan Cane\
 + ​Foreign ownership handicaps electronics\
 + ​Financial Times, 1 March 1993, p7\
 +\
 + (6) Grant Lederwood et al\
 + The Environmental Audit and Business Strategy. A Total Quality
 +Approach\
 + ​Pitman Publishing, 1992\
 +\
 + (7) Romesh Vaitilingam ed\
 + ​Industrial Initiatives for Environmental Conservation\
 + ​Pitman,​ 1993\
 +\
 + (8) Dominik Korchlin and Kaspar Muller eds\
 + Green Business Opportunities. The Profit Potential\
 + ​Pitman,​ 1992\
 +\
 + (9) Bernard Taylor et al\
 + ​Environmental Management Handbook\
 + ​Pitman,​ 1994\
 +\
 + (10) Brian Burrows\
 + The Greening of Business and Its Relationship to Business Ethics\
 + Long Range Planning, Vol 16, No 1 Feb 1993, p130-139\
 +\
 + (11) Brian Burrows\
 + Green Business. The Key to a Sustainable Future and Holistic\
 + ​Management,​ 1996 (unpublished report)\
 +\
 + (12) Robert Chote\
 + Why the Chancellor is always wrong\
 + New Scientist, 31 Oct 1992, p26-31\
 +\
 + (13) Britain'​s top ten forecasters\
 + ​Financial Times, 30 Oct 1992, p14\
 +\
 + (14) Leslie Chapman\
 + Your Disobedient Servant\
 + ​Chatto and Windus, 1978\
 +\
 + (15) Clive Ponting\
 + ​Whithall:​ Tragedy & Farce\
 + ​Hamish Hamilton, 1986\
 +\
 + (16) Will Hutton\
 + ​Defining treasury disease\
 + ​Guardian,​ 20 Dec, 1993\
 +\
 + (17) George Goyder\
 + The Just Enterprise. A Blue Print for the Responsible Company\
 + ​Adamantine Press, 1993\
 +\
 + (18) Charles Handy\
 + The Future of Work, Blackwell, 1995\
 +\
 + (19) James Robertson\
 + ​Future Work, Gower, 1995\
 +\
 + (20) James Robertson\
 + ​Electronic,​ Environment and Employment\
 + ​Futures,​ Vol 27 no5 pp 487-504, 1995\
 +\
 + (21) Hazel Henderson\
 + ​Paradigms in Progress. Life Beyond Economics\
 + ​Adamantine Press, 1993\
 +\
 + (22) John Maynard Keynes\
 + The General Theory of Employment Interest and Money, MacMillan, 1936\
 +\
 + (23) Asa Briggs\
 + The Historian as a Futurist\
 + ​Futures,​ Vol 10 No 6 pp 445-451, 1978\
 +\
 + (24) Marion Shoard\
 + This Land is Our Land. The Struggle for Britain'​s Countryside\
 + ​Paladin,​ 1987\
 +\
 + (25) Kirkpatrick Sale\
 + ​Rebels Against the Future: The Luddites and Their War on the Industrial
 +Revolution\
 + ​Addison-Wesley,​ 1995\
 +\
 + (26) John Papworth\
 + Small is Powerful. The Future s if People rerally Mattered\
 + ​Adamantine Press, 1995\
 +\
 + (27) Will Hutton\
 + The State we are in.\
 + ​Vintage,​ 1996\
 +\
 + (28) Graham May\
 + The Future is Ours. Foreseeing, Managing and Creating the Future\
 + ​Adamantine Press, 1996\
 +\
 + (29) Flora Thompson\
 + ​Heatherley\
 + OUP, 1979, p223\
 +
 +Brian Burrows\
 + ​Futures Information Associates\
 + 40 Stone Hill\
 + Two Mile Ash\
 + ​Milton Keynes\
 + MK8 8LR\
 + tel 01908 569892\
 + ​October 1996
 +
 +
 +
 +Prepared by David Wilcox
 +[dwilcox@pavilion.co.uk](mailto:​dwilcox@pavilion.co.uk) October 25
 +1996
 +
  
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